Coronation Street’s Sue Nicholls shares tribute to co-star after heartbreaking death

The legendary Sue Nicholls of Coronation Street, who portrays Audrey Roberts, has paid homage to her longtime co-star John Savident on the news of the actor’s 86-year-old passing.

Following the tragic loss of her co-actor John Savident, who portrayed the loving butcher Fred Elliott on Coronation Street, at the age of 86, Sue Nicholls, star of the serial opera, has written a poignant tribute to him.

Sue, 80, who portrays Audrey Roberts in Corrie, wrote an impassioned ode to her renowned co-star John after learning of his untimely death. In it, Sue praised John for being in her life.

Though he heroically faced health challenges off-screen, John was well-liked by fans for his portrayal as the loud and proud butcher on the ITV serial opera.

“We are sad to announce the death of the actor John Savident who passed away on Wednesday, February 21. He was a much-loved husband and father of two and will be sorely missed by all who knew him,” his agency said in a statement that confirmed the tragic news of his departure on Friday, February 23.

Coronation Street legend Sue Nicholls, who plays Audrey Roberts, has paid tribute to long-time co-star John Savident after it was announced the actor died aged 86 (Image: ITV)

When John initially debuted on the cobbles in 1994, his character’s unfortunate love life—which included three marriages and several failed proposals—quickly won over fans.

On the day that Fred was supposed to marry Bev Unwin (Susie Blake), Sue famously informed him that she wishes she was marrying him.

Sue released a statement saying, “I am very saddened to learn of John’s demise. It brings me delight to think back on our street work together, John. I will always cherish those memories.

“You have my gratitude and blessings for being in my life. Much love to you, your loved ones, and your friends.”

Sue, 80, who plays Audrey on Corrie, thanked John for being in her life in her emotional tribute (Image: ITV)

After 43 years as Audrey on Coronation Street, soap opera queen Sue has established herself as a mainstay on our TV screens.

The well-known actress has been at the center of countless dramatic stories over the years, making her a fan favorite among viewers of the iconic ITV soap opera.

Sue’s portrayal of Audrey has earned her several accolades, and the soap opera character helped her discover love.

John first appeared on the cobbles in 1994 and quickly won over viewers with his character’s unlucky love life (Image: Unknown)

When John’s character Fred on Corrie found out he had a hidden son named Ashley Peacock (played by Steven Arnold), the two became close while working as butchers.

On the day of his marriage to Bev in 2006, Fred, the character he played, had a stroke. John disclosed in the same year that he was scheduled for heart surgery, saying, “I’m getting surgery on my heart next year. I’m getting a new valve inserted. I’m tired of my current partner.”

In later years, he received a hip replacement and battled diabetes.

The 86-year-old was known for his booming voice while playing butcher Fred Elliott (Image: Granada Television)

John revealed that he had the artificial hip installed to the Manchester Evening News in 2011. He said that his procedures caused him to slow down, but he was looking forward to a new career.

After the concert, John continued to act but stayed silent. Alongside his old Corrie friend Suranne Jones, he played the henchman in the pantomime Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, which also starred Justin Moorhouse and Warwick Davis.

In the 2019 play The Life and Times of Mim Stewart, he played Gary Brennan in his last performance. He played Monsieur Firmin in The Phantom of the Opera at The Royal Albert Hall eight years prior to that.

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